Lateral Pivot Shift Test of the Elbow

 Lateral Pivot Shift Test of the Elbow

What is Lateral Pivot Shift Test of the Elbow?

Lateral Pivot Shift test of the elbow or as called (Posterolateral Apprehension Test) is used for Lateral Ulnar Collateral Ligament Injury (PLRI) which causes posterolateral instability of the elbow.

This test was first described by described by O’Driscoll in 19911.

How it’s Performed?

What does a positive Lateral Pivot Shift Test of the Elbow mean?

Lateral Pivot Shift test of the elbow is considered positive when:

Sensitivity & Specificity


Lateral Ulnar Collateral Ligament
Lateral Ulnar Collateral Ligament


  1. O’Driscoll SW, Bell DF, Morrey BF: Posterolateral rotatory instability of the elbow. J Bone Joint Surg Am. 1991 Mar; 73(3):440-6. PMID: 2002081
  2. William Regan, Peter C Lapner: Prospective evaluation of two diagnostic apprehension signs for posterolateral instability of the elbow. J Shoulder Elbow Surg . May-Jun 2006;15(3):344-6. doi: 10.1016/j.jse.2005.03.009. PMID: 16679236
  3. Lauren E. Karbach, MD and John Elfar, MD: Elbow Instability: Anatomy, Biomechanics, Diagnostic Maneuvers, and Testing. J Hand Surg Am. 2017 Feb; 42(2): 118–126. PMID: 28160902
  4. Clinical Tests for the Musculoskeletal System 3rd Edition.
  5. Dutton’s Orthopaedic Examination, Evaluation, And Intervention 3rd Edition.

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